Technology Challenges Teachers to Develop Additional Skills
“The technology that has so dramatically changed the world outside our schools is now changing the learning and teaching environment within them.” – National Education Technology Plan for the U.S. Department of Education.
A school system’s most important asset is its teaching force. The most important investment a school board, administrators, and parents can make in a school system is to ensure that teachers continue to learn. Continuous, high-quality professional development for the teaching force is essential to meeting the nation’s goal of high standards of learning for every child.
Technology can be a useful tool in the classroom. It does not mean that teachers need to abandon all of their current practices: technology offers teachers a new outlet for growth and development, and creates new opportunities to reach all students and promote lifelong learning for all.
Professional development should also enable teachers to offer students the learning opportunities that will prepare them to meet excellent standards in given content areas and to successfully assume adult responsibilities for citizenship and work.
Professional development should:
- Deepen and broaden knowledge of content.
- Develop the correct use of teaching strategies for particular disciplines.
- Provide knowledge about the teaching and learning processes.
- Be rooted in the best available research.
- Be aligned with the standards and curriculum that teachers use.
- Contribute to measurable improvement in student achievement.
- Provide sufficient time, support, and resources to enable teachers to master new content and practices, and to integrate this knowledge and skill into their work.
How can technology enhance the teaching environment?
- It enhances the curriculum
- It increases flexibility of presentations
- It provides visualization in a variety of formats
- Introduces new skills for changing economy
- Can help to improve communication
- Rich tools for learning
- Can bridge gaps for the disabled – Technology in the classroom promotes an increase in writing skills; better understanding of maths; the ability to teach others; and greater problem-solving and critical thinking.